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CARE Member Contributions to The Next Thirty Years


The "Last of the Chabotozos"
Submitted by Carey Harbin
Chabot College


When I started at Chabot College in 1986, my first experience as a Liaison Counselor with the local high schools resulted in my learning that the high school students referred to those who opted for or who or only had the option of going to the community college, Chabot specifically, as "Chabotozos".  It was a derogatory reference because non-Chabotozos were headed to the real colleges of UC, CSU, and/or private universities.

Over the next couple of years, it occurred to me this was something that might be spun, so I started using the term "Chabotozo" as a positive term to mean "an individual who is committed to and supportive of the mission and work and experiences at Chabot College, whether faculty, staff, or student."  I can remember that I actually started calling myself a "Chabotozo" when I went out to the high school meetings and saying how proud I was to be a "Chabotozo".  I added that being a "Chabotozo" was good because of all the reasons we recommend the community college as a beginning: less expensive, smaller class sizes, focus on instruction rather than research, able to maintain current job and family contacts, able to explore options, etc.

As more and more of the long-term and committed faculty and classified professionals with whom I started work retired, there were fewer and fewer of the "Chabotozos" from the old days on campus.  Dr. Susan Sperling was one of those people because she had been active in building the Anthropology Program at Chabot and LPC plus she was one of the active faculty members in my General Studies 20 (parallel to Psychology-Counseling 20, "The Chabotozos T-shirt imageCollege Experience") course.  One day I saw her on my hall in Building 100 (old offices) and asked her in where I told her she was a "Chabotozo".  At first, I am not sure she took it as a compliment but after a little explanation, she embraced the role.  Ever since that time, Dr. Sperling and I have usually addressed each other as the "last of the Chabotozos".  It is a term of endearment!!!!  I thought of having a t-shirt made when Dr. Sperling became Chabot College President but never got around to it.  Too bad....what a look on her face during convocation day!!!

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2007 C.A.R.E.

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